If you are still in a festive mood, these gingerbread cupcakes should hit the spot.

The unexpected addition of Guinness stout adds earthiness to the cake and also reacts with the baking soda to make a soft and moist crumb.


Makes 24

250 ml/one cup of Guinness stout

250g of black treacle/molasses

Half a teaspoon of baking soda

280g of plain flour

One tablespoon ground ginger and one teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Three eggs

100g of caster sugar

100g of dark brown soft sugar

One tablespoon finely fresh ginger 200ml of sunflower oil.

Chopped crystallized ginger, to decorate

Golden cream cheese icing

225g cream cheese

60g unsalted butter, softened

175g confectioners’ sugar, sifted One teaspoon vanilla extract.

Two tablespoons golden syrup

Muffin tray lined with 24 large cupcake cases

Piping bag with a star-shaped nozzle



Preheat the oven to 170°C, gas mark 5. Put the Guinness and treacle in a tall saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the bicarbonate of/baking soda. Let stand until completely cool.

Put the flour, baking powder, ground ginger, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cardamom and cloves in a bowl and stir until well blended.

In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, both sugars and the grated fresh ginger. Gradually add the oil. Add the stout syrup and stir thoroughly.

Add the egg mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared cupcake cases, filling them four-fifths of the way up (the mixture will not rise that much).

Bake in the preheated oven for 25–35 minutes until they feel springy to the touch. Remove the cupcakes from the muffin tray and let cool on a wire rack.

To make the golden cream cheese icing, put the cream cheese and butter in a bowl and beat until combined and glossy. Add the icing/confectioners’ sugar and beat until fluffy. Fold in the vanilla extract and golden syrup.

Fill the prepared piping bag with the icing and pipe onto the cupcakes. Top with a couple of pieces of crystallized ginger, to decorate.

Recipe: Bea’s of Bloomsbury